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risk assessment


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Quantitative and/or qualitative estimation of the likelihood that an outcome, such as an adverse effect, will result from exposure to a specified hazard or hazards, or from the absence of protective or beneficial factors. Risk assessment is an integral part of health policy. It makes use of clinical, toxicological, epidemiological, environmental, and other data. There are four steps in risk assessment: 1. Hazard identification, which is identifying agents responsible for adverse effects and outcomes, delineating the exposed population, and describing exposure circumstances; 2. Risk characterization, i.e., describing potential effects of exposure, quantifying dose-effect and dose-response relationships; 3. Exposure assessment, which is assessing and measuring exposure and dose in specified populations on the basis of measurements of environmental and individual levels of toxic substances and pollutants, biological monitoring, etc.; and 4. Risk estimation, which means assembling the relevant data to quantify the risk level in a specific population, the end result of which is estimates of the numbers affected by defined and specified outcomes.

1. Hazard identification, which is identifying agents responsible for adverse effects and outcomes, delineating the exposed population, and describing exposure circumstances; 2. Risk characterization, i.e., describing potential effects of exposure, quantifying dose-effect and dose-response relationships; 3. Exposure assessment, which is assessing and measuring exposure and dose in specified populations on the basis of measurements of environmental and individual levels of toxic substances and pollutants, biological monitoring, etc.; and 4. Risk estimation, which means assembling the relevant data to quantify the risk level in a specific population, the end result of which is estimates of the numbers affected by defined and specified outcomes.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology.


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